Wheeler Bill to Protect Victims of Domestic Violence Signed into Law

Governor Quinn has signed legislation to protect survivors of domestic violence. “Diane’s Law,” sponsored by State Representative Barbara Wheeler (R-Crystal Lake) and Senator Pamela Althoff (R-McHenry), allows the courts to order risk assessment and electronic surveillance of those charged with domestic abuse in order to increase protections for victims of domestic violence.

House Bill 3744 allows the court to order individuals charged with intimate partner abuse including domestic battery, kidnapping, stalking, harassment and attempted murder to undergo a risk assessment evaluation as a condition of bail. The court may also require GPS monitoring of the defendant to help monitor and enforce restraining orders. The new law is effective Jan. 1, 2015.

Diane’s Law was written following the murder of Diane Kephart by a former boyfriend on March 15, 2013. Diane was murdered three days after renewing her protective order against an ex-boyfriend. "Hopefully this legislation will contribute towards keeping the victims of domestic violence safer in the future," stated Wheeler. "This measure will be an added tool in the hands of the justice system to protect those potentially in harm’s way."